Prague, the capital of the Czech Republic. It’s home to about 1.3 million people. Only a few years ago, Prague was listed as the fifth most visited European city after London, Paris, Rome and Istanbul. I already made a lot of travel guides, but this Prague Travel Guide is special because there is so much history in this city. It feels like a history lesson at school, a long time ago. One thing that stands out is that the city center is small and you can walk easily from one attraction to the other.
Old Center – Staré Město
The old center of Prague is called: Staré Město and it was built between the 11th and 18th centuries. You will find the most famous sights here in the Old Town area and this is also an UNESCO World Heritage sight. What strikes me is the beautiful architecture in general. So many beautiful buildings and colors.
The heart of the old town is a beautiful square. The history here dates back to the 10th century, when it served as a marketplace at the crossroads of European trade routes. It’s also home to some of the best Christmas and Easter markets in the world. You can find vendors selling everything from hot wine and traditional food to handcrafted gifts and ornaments.
What I recommend to you is to take some time to walk around in the old town. It’s beautiful! And it’s also the best way to explore the cozy sidewalks. So don’t forget to pack some comfortable shoes.
Old Center – City Hall
In the old center you can see nice preserved buildings and monuments: for example the Church of Our Lady in front of Tyn and the Old Town City Hall. A building that truly dominates the square. Since 1338! In 1410 the astronomical clock was added to the Hall with a chronometer and the zodiac below. The tower of the building is open and there is an observation deck with amazing views of Old Town Square.
Prague is surrounded by the Vltava/Moldau river. To cross the water, there are 18 bridges in town and the most famous is this one from the 14th century, the Charles Bridge. Its construction started in 1357 and finished in the early 15th century. Their story is that they used eggs during the construction to make the bridge stronger. Since 1978 the bridge has become a pedestrian zone. It’s a nice walk of 1 kilometer up and down. Don’t forget to take a look at all the decorations of statues and statuaries.
When you walk on the bridge you already see the next highlight, the Prague Castle! And yes… the only way is up! This really is one of the biggest castles in the world. It is a complex with churches, palaces and courtyards. This place is also the office of the president of the Czech Republic.
Over here you find the most important cathedral, the St. Vitus. This is the biggest cathedral in the whole country. This Gothic cathedral is the spiritual symbol of the Czech state. It was founded in 1344 on the site of the original Romanesque rotunda. The construction took nearly 600 years and was finally completed in 1929. It’s kind of similar to the Sagrada Familia in Barcelona, however they actually finished this one.
Also don’t miss out the Golden Lane, a kind of famous street, named after goldsmiths who operated there with beautiful tiny houses. A personal travel tip is to visit the castle in the afternoon, because after 5PM they don’t charge you to come in. However if you will visit it earlier in the day, you can buy your tickets in advance on GetYourGuide to avoid any waiting lines.
Weather in Prague – Best time to visit Prague
The best time to visit Prague is during the months, May or September. The winters can be cold, with some snow and the summers are warm and then it is more comfortable to go to a beach destination.
The Czech Republic is a member of the European Union, just like Amsterdam, Lisbon and Paris, so when you are in the EU, there are no restrictions to enter the country. There is one thing different and that is the currency. They don’t haveThe famous EURO currency here, but their own Czech koruna. So always check your currency converter, to avoid surprises (after your trip).
Visiting a city and improving your health.. at least your legs.. I like it. In Prague there are a lot of nice viewing points. It was difficult to show you all, so I decided to go to the Petřín hill during my visit. I walked up and it was quite a climb.You can also go up with a train. It’s part of the public transportation system, so when you have a day card… you can use this, without extra costs. There is a departure every 15 minutes!
Petřín Lookout Tower
One of the most prominent landmarks of Prague is the Petřín Lookout Tower. It was built in 1891 as a loose copy of the Eiffel Tower (at a ratio of 1:5). The tower is almost 60 meters high and it is 299 steps to the peak. The view from the top overlooks not only the whole city, but on a clear day you can see nearly all of the area.
Prague City Beach – Zlute Lazne
During the summer days you can visit Prague city beach “Zlute Lazne”. It’s around 5 kilometers from the city center, but there are great connections with the trams. It’s not only a beach, but also a place for festivals, to sport or eat and drink. I think it’s one of the best escapes you can have from the busy city center of Prague. The entry fee is around 4 euro, with discounted rates for children.
Streetcar Ride in Prague
Most people use the streetcar service for daily transportation, but it is also a great way to explore the city. For example streetcar 17 and 22 are nice!, 22 is going to the Prague Castle and tram 17 gives you the best view over the river. A ticket for 90 minutes will set you back around 1,20 euro. Otherwise you buy a day card for around 4 euro! Here you can find the public transportion app: PID Mobile application.
Near the Old Town you can visit Kampa island. It is separated from the mainland by a narrow channel. It is a relatively quiet island and very cozy. Especially on the square “Na Kampe” you will find nice cafes and restaurants everywhere. When you walk a little further, you arrive in a small park. From this park you have a beautiful view of the river and the old town.
Don’t forget to take a look at the most famous wall in Prague, the John Lennon Wall. It’s located near Kampa Island. Around 1980, several young people from the city, began to fill this then white wall with lyrics and portraits of John Lennon and the Beatles. It was meant as a kind of protest against the communist regime of the time. Despite the fact that the wall has been completely repainted, it is still a symbol of love and peace today. Also with each visit the Lennon Wall will look a little different, because many artists still come to add their creations.
Manifesto (Food Market)
Of course you can visit regular restaurants in Prague. However there are really nice food markets around town, where you should definetly go for a drink or to eat something. The food markets are called Manifesto. They are completely open to the public and you can find several of them. More information regarding the food markets can be found on the website of Manifesto Market.